The difficulty of monitoring
We hear it all the time: one of the best ways to have an effective and thriving online presence is to monitor who is looking at your content and which elements of your marketing are seeing the most success. You’d be surprised to know, however, that many people leave social media out of the mix. It’s understandable. Unless you use services such as HootSuite, where you can pay to monitor your social media metrics closely, it’s hard to really know how many people are actually seeing your posts.
There is one glaringly obvious metric, however, that you can easily monitor, and that is your Facebook presence. The social media giant makes it so easy for you. At the top of your Facebook Page (not profile, but business Page), you’ll notice an “admin panel” with a graph showing your overall reach and engagement in your Facebook postings over the past month.
If you look underneath each individual posting, you’ll also notice that you can see metrics showing how many people saw that particular piece of content. This might not seem like a big deal, but it is. Let me explain—I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard agents say that Facebook isn’t working for them and that they’re not getting any engagement. There are a number of reasons that this could be the case, but if you look at your metrics and see which posts had the most views AND the most engagement, you can tweak your content accordingly. You have the ability to find out what really works. These metrics also give you a more accurate depiction of your target audience.
Quick tips for tweaking your strategy
As you start using these numbers to tweak your social media strategy, I wanted to point out a few things that you should keep in mind:
This is a more accurate indication of your reach. Sure, you might have 600 fans, but underneath each post, it may say that it reached only 300 people. This means that you have 300 fans who read your content regularly, and those are the people who you need to try to engage. If you can engage more, that initial reach WILL increase.
The higher the reach, the more engagement you will get. In order to increase reach, however, you need to focus on engaging with the fans who ARE looking at your posts. You do this by focusing your efforts on creating conversation, not marketing yourself or using your page as a bulletin board for upcoming news and events.
With these two things in mind, you have probably figured out that your number one focus in re-doing your social media strategy needs to be engagement. Focus on obtaining interaction and building a presence based on conversation, and your overall reach will increase. This is the key to getting your brand the exposure that you’re looking for.
Next: obtaining engagement
The next step is figuring out how to go about obtaining engagement. This is a process that is best implemented through trial and error. No two strategies will work for the same target market. You have to try some different tactics and see what works. Once you start seeing a trend, you can figure out a strategy that works best for your business. Here are some common tricks of the trade that you can implement as you go about your new strategy:
• Post at the right time. Most studies show that the best time to post content on Facebook is early in the morning or late at night. Avoid late morning or early afternoon postings. The objective is to post so that the most people possible will see it right away.
• Include CTA’s in your posts. It might sound strange, but the Facebook postings that see the most success are the ones in which the page asks them to like or comment on a status. It prompts them to participate on your page.
• Make sure your content has a purpose. You want what you put on your page to be interesting and valuable to the consumer, so if that means you go a day or two without posting anything, then that’s okay. You don’t want to post just for the sake of posting. Unless you have something exciting to share or something purposeful to say, it’s best to refrain from posting and focus your efforts on engaging with your network on their own Facebook pages.
There you have it. Don’t overlook the most obvious social media metric available to you. Use the numbers, review your current efforts and come up with a plan to change it and improve your online presence. That’s the secret to being “cutting edge” in the online marketing realm. Start experimenting.